Obama Love, Tea Party Racists: BET’s “Critical Condition”

Critical Condition: What's At Stake in Health Care Reform?

Guests on the show will include White House Director of Domestic Policy Melody Barnes; U.S. Congress members James Clyburn (D-S.C.) and Maxine Waters (D-CA); BET News’ Pamela Gentry; filmmaker Michael Moore; Conservative Policy Expert Bob Parks, physician Sampson Davis of Newark’s “Three Pact” and more.

Sunday, Sept. 27, 2009 at 10pm/9C

Note all Democrat politicians, and I was the only person labeled with an adjective.

BTW — Michael Moore didn’t show. (Is he a racist?)

The taping began with a discussion between the host Jeff Johnson and Melody Barnes, in which she just recited the president’s pro-public option talking points.

There were no questions for Ms. Barnes requested from the panelists or the audience.

The following segment was a discussion between the host Jeff Johnson and Congressman James Clyburn in which he talked about how bad things were for black people back in the day and how many black people die today because we don’t have health care and just how bad things are regarding health care in the black community in general.

There were no questions for Congressman Clyburn requested from the panelists or the audience.

For the third segment, Congressmen Clyburn and the host were joined by Congresswoman Maxine Waters. They discussed the importance of the public option, the rudeness and lack of decorum illustrated by Congressman Joe Wilson and how he pulls those kinds of outbursts, evil insurance companies and obscene profits by CEOs, the racism demonstrated at the tea party protests… and then the host turned to me, mentioned that he knew I’d have something to say about this.

I asked about the lack of media discussion on the one thing the president makes no real mention of: tort reform. I mentioned the article where in Mississippi (where they have tort reform on the state level) insurance rates have been cut by a third, and the evil insurance companies are actually giving policyholders rebates. I said that tort reform was probably off the table because over $19 million have been given to Democrats by the trial lawyer lobby for the 2010 midterms.

The host quickly asked me my take on President Obama’s position on tort reform during his last address to Congress.

This is where I’ll probably look bad on video.

I honestly couldn’t remember what he’s ever said on the topic. I had no real answer. I don’t know if the two congresspersons had a prior agreement not to take questions, but Mr. Johnson quickly announced a commercial break. Congressman Clyburn left the set, some of the other quests took the stage, and Congresswoman Waters was seated next to me for the next segment. (She never acknowledged my existence.)

BET News’ Pamela Gentry told me inbetween segments that President Obama did make reference to tort reform during that address. He said he’d “consider it”. All of a few seconds, which is probably why I missed it.

After the next segment and the audience was shuffled again (people were leaving), a woman now seated next to me thanked me because she was happy to find a “like-minded” person on the roster. During the final segment, questions were taken from the audience to the last three onstage with the host.

The only problem is the people asking the questions were given note cards with the questions prior to, which is unfortunate because the questioners seemed like they could ask intelligent ones and I know the panelists could give intelligent answers. I guess BET just wanted to make sure the show stayed on message.

BET’s website is currently requesting Tweets on people’s concerns about health care…

Submit your question with your name and hometown below in the comments section. It might be used in Critical Conditon, an upcoming BET News Special.

However, the Tweets responded to during the program were submitted prior to taping. (The above typo was cut and pasted from their site as of 9/23/09).

Later while I was waiting to leave, another older woman approached and also thanked me as she was an auditor general and a supporter of tort reform.

All in all, the BET producer and staff were very nice, as were the fellow panelists. Our elected officials said exactly what was expected: talking points from the administration with no opportunity for rebuttal.

About The Author

  • http://black-and-right.com Bob

    Forgive me, Justyce1, for forgetting your question prior to mine.

    As far as BET not giving note cards to people, I wasn’t the only person who caught that. The people I was sitting with noticed them as well. Seeing how this didn’t take place in a vacuum (and I don’t edit comments here), I don’t lie about things, especially when there were witnesses.

  • Justyce1

    @ Bob Parks’ statement : “The only problem is the people asking the questions were given note cards with the questions prior to, which is unfortunate because the questioners seemed like they could ask intelligent ones and I know the panelists could give intelligent answers. I guess BET just wanted to make sure the show stayed on message.”

    I was actually at the taping of this and I had the opportunity to ask an “intelligent” yet simple question (BET did not give questions to the audience members). I also did not have a note card.

    My question was actually right before the host directed his attention to Bob. I asked, “How will minorities benefit from a bill that does not include a public option”. This is a question that I know the answer to. I am very involved and aware of what’s going on in regards to health care reform- its my job. I have read every version of every bill and proposal. I know what’s in it.

    Was my question answered? No. I was hoping that the members could speak on other positive parts of health care reform that will also benefit minorities and low-income populations. The public option was already stressed to its maximum but I felt that people need to know what other provisions will do for our people, regardless of if there is a public option. For example, a Medicaid expansion would provide millions of low-income families with coverage. However, I felt like the response I received had little to do with the question I asked.

  • girzwald

    @mary

    He was on the slave ship La Amistad. Basically he was being sold into slavery, the ship mutanyed, went to court,he won his freedom, then went on to be a slave trader himself.

  • mary

    conservatism to find out the truth about it instead of believeing what the MSM says about us. I wish more whites would do the same. They would be surprised to find out we’re not a bunch of leftovers from the Jim Crow era or even before. (I heard a black intellectualoid on NPR’s program, “On the Media” try to link the suppposedly racist opposition to Obamacare to the proslavery thinking of pre-Civil War South Carolina Sen. John C. Calhoun. There is no extreme the Left won’t go to. Well, nothin’ new ’bout that. I suppose I shouldn’t have been shocked.)

    girzwald — Who is Joseph Cinque?

  • mary

    Bob, I’m looking forward to seeing you Sunday night. I’m really glad you went, and there were others who were sympathetic with you. Black conservatives must sometimes feel like islands in a sea of white people. Its always nice to know you’re not alone. I wish more black Americans and other minorities were at least attracted enough to

  • cmjcex

    Gee, Sunday at 10. Football may still be on and there is the new Ken Burns film on the national parks. We see a lot of you, Bob (by freedom of choice)… Maxine Waters? I dunno…

  • girzwald

    @Nicolas

    Pretty sure you dont call females “uncle toms”. Usually you would call them a sellout or an aunt jemimia.

    But aside from that. Shes prolly the opposite of what an “uncle tom” would be. She is supposedly exactly what a black person “should” behave like. Bob is what the libs would call an uncle tom.

    They have “uncle tom”……We should start calling people like maxine waters “Joseph Cinqué”

  • Cindy

    I personally would not have gone, they can’t even give a balance of opinions. 6 to 1 really! I’m glad Moore(head) didn’t show up.

  • Brandon

    Look forward to seeing it. I am a bit concerned what they’ll do with 5 days to do some “creative editing” though.

  • Trishmac

    Great work Bob, though it seems that the conditions for the politicians, were hermetically sealed to protect them from having to face any real questions. Too bad, seems there is no conversation but their conversation, God forbid a democrat would have a real honest debate.

  • The Machine

    In a setup like that, victory is counted when you escape unscathed nor shredded by a mock trial.

    So Bob won.

  • http://sgthartsock.blogspot.com/ Nicolas

    speaking of healthcare..I hope to GOD the doctor will NOT see us now…

  • http://black-and-right.com Bob

    Rich: Sunday, Sept. 27, 2009 at 10pm/9C

  • http://sgthartsock.blogspot.com/ Nicolas

    “BTW — Michael Moore didn’t show. (Is he a racist?)”

    Racist COMMUNIST, yes..

    “All in all, the BET producer and staff were very nice, as were the fellow panelists”

    good to know of some of the folks who were impressed by you as well, Bob.

    “Our elected officials said exactly what was expected: talking points from the administration with no opportunity for rebuttal.”

    arrogance you can believe in, especially from that uncle tom pain in the ass, Maxine Waters. Sounds like her not even acknowledging your existence, Bob, is nothing short her admitting she’s a socialist. Hell, I remember you even REPORTED that little gem last year…yeesh..

    Anyway, hope they make it look as good as it can be. If it looks anything worse than what you’re describing here, Bob, I’m calling “bullshit!” on the part of BET editors and will further of my distrust of the network..

  • dancingbear

    OldnyFirefighter Says:

    September 22nd, 2009 at 11:50 pm
    Rich, Maxine can be lumped in with Bawney Fwanks – Dumb & Dumber! If you include Pelosi – The Three Stooges!!

    you take that back!!! The three Stooges actually made sense!!

  • OldnyFirefighter

    Bob, it looks a little like a stacked deck against you, but that just makes your commentary more credible. Too bad Popping Fresh Michael Moore was chicken to show up. I would love to see you blow his mind with common sense answers, what mind remains anyway. Keep up the good work. You know I am definitely in your corner & watchin your back if necessary.

  • OldnyFirefighter

    Rich, Maxine can be lumped in with Bawney Fwanks – Dumb & Dumber! If you include Pelosi – The Three Stooges!!

  • Richmedia

    Sounds like you did a good job, Bob! Obama did mention tort reform being on the table, perhaps as a “trial” in a couple of limited markets. No one takes him seriously, he is not in favor, test markets or not. Texas has also had great success with their tort reform law, physicians have been moving into, and not out of the state.

    If he were truly in favor of conservative free-market solutions, he would not have cut the charter school voucher program which was particularly effective in DC and other major metro areas.

    I could comment on Waters, but I’ll save it for another time. Speaking of time, is the air time set yet? Let us know and we’ll try to spread the word around.

  • Tabcola

    I agree with IT Nerd. NO MATTER WHAT, WE ARE IN YOUR CORNER!!! But sounds like you did fine. The proof will be in the editing, which you know first hand. It sounds to me like you did wonderfully and we all knew you would! You’re the best!!!

  • IT Nerd

    Sounds like Pamela Genty actually conducted a fair debate even with the panel stacked against you.

    No matter how the video plays out, we will be in your corner.